Problems with heating and cooling systems can range anywhere from elevated operating costs due to an older, inefficient system to hazardous malfunctions. Even though here in SWFL we are not as concerned about heat as we are about conditioned air, it is important to be familiar with both your heating and cooling systems and how to maintain them properly to avoid any dangerous conditions or costly repairs.
One of the most important things you can do to maintain the efficiency of your heating and cooling systems as well as the air quality in your home is to make sure that your ducts and filters are cleaned or replaced regularly. Duct cleaning takes the expertise of a professional. If you need to find a duct cleaning service, this link is a good resource: https://www.nadca.com/zm2/search1.asp.
It’s a good idea to also clean your registers and vents regularly between your duct cleaning service’s visits. This can be done easily by cleaning and removing the registers and then vacuuming out the ducts as far as your vacuum hose can reach.
As mentioned above in SW Florida our heating system is usually not our top priority but you should still check it periodically to make sure that it operates normally for when you do need to use it. Most importantly, you should also do some regular maintenance on your cooling system. Since many of us here in SW Florida operate our AC for most, if not all year long it is a good idea to hire a professional service to give your system a check-up before you start using it. This usually involves a thorough cleaning of the air conditioning unit and a refill of the coolant if needed. Monthly, you should also check the unit for blockages and remove any vegetation growing around it that could interfere with its proper functioning. You should also clean or change the filter and check the condensate drain at least monthly. For window units, you should clean or replace the filter at least monthly, bi-weekly during the hottest months. You should also check the condensate drain to make sure that all moisture is draining properly.